The Conor O’Dwyer-trained colt has contested some decent maidens and showed fine form trying a handicap for the first time, at the Curragh.
On that occasion, he stayed on nicely to finish third behind the very useful Leath Na Hoibre and, in doing so, left the impression there could be more to come. Today’s slightly longer trip should help bring about a little improvement, and he can be expected to account for Touch Of Frost.
Sierra Sun should take beating in the Connacht Oaks Fillies’ Handicap. The Dermot Weld-trained filly ran a huge race in defeat in the qualified riders’ race on the first day of the Galway Festival, and shouldn’t be inconvenienced by the drop in trip.
After missing a beat at the break on that occasion, she was forced to make her move around the outside of the large field, and that proved costly.
This race represents a much easier task, and she is drawn to dominate from the outset. Course and distance winner Ceylon may be the one to give most to think about.
Botanical Lady looks a value bet in the Foley’s Bar & Off Licence Handicap. Harry Rogers’ filly ran very well in defeat at Killarney last time out, when she was headed inside the furlong and beaten into sixth place, behind Reckless Lad. Down in trip and ideally drawn this time, she should be prominent from the outset, and is taken to fend off all-comers. Vasoni boasts winning form over course and distance, and looks the best alternative.
Only three go to post for the finale, and Sidra can use the opportunity to secure a second career victory. Dermot Weld’s filly was easy to back on her penultimate start, at Gowran Park, but put up a very nice performance to beat the highly regarded Tara Dylan.
She then made her handicap debut at Killarney, and finished an honourable second behind On A Pedastal, to whom she was trying to concede 17lbs. As the winner is now rated 90, there was plenty of merit to the performance, and the selection could also be capable of showing improvement.
She can score at the expense of Nebulla, who looked promising in two runs as a juvenile, for Noel Quinlan. He made a somewhat inauspicious start to his career for John Oxx last month, but that’s easily forgivable. Today’s more testing conditions should play to his strengths, and he will almost certainly show improved form.